World War II Wool Field Uniform

T/4 Johnnie Stone, Det. 6835th Quartermaster Remount Station, in wool field uniform, with Kidra, an Arabian mare, one of 152 horses brought from Europe on Liberty Ship SS Stephen F. Austin.  Photo:  Hampton Roads Port of Embarkation, 15 November 1945
T/4 Johnnie Stone, Det. 6835th Quartermaster Remount Station, in wool field uniform, with "Kidra", an Arabian mare, one of 152 horses brought from Europe on Liberty Ship SS Stephen F. Austin. Photo: Hampton Roads Port of Embarkation, 15 November 1945.

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World War II Wool Field Uniform: Trousers

Trousers, Wool

In 1938 wool trousers for enlisted personnel were standardized in olive drab, light shade based on a 1937 pattern. These had conventional side and hip pockets (2 each), a watch pocket, and a button fly. The nomenclature was "Trousers, Wool, Serge, OD, Light Shade". An 18 oz. wool was adopted as optimum for weight, warmth, and ease of production. In 1942 a gas flap was added behind the fly (the word Special is added to the nomenclature).

Olive drab wool field trousers developed in 1942-43 were similar in design to the wool serge trousers that had previously issued except for a higher rise and wider seat to address complaints from the field for more room and comfort, especially when worn over "long john" underwear. Adjustment tabs were provided at the waist and cuffs. Wool trousers were issued in 1944 in a darker shade of OD to match the Jacket, Field, Wool, OD (Ike Jacket).

Stock numbers for wool trousers will range upward from these base numbers, according to size.

  • Trousers, Wool, Serge, OD, Light Shade (1937 pattern): 55-T-81995-20
  • Trousers, Wool, Serge, OD, Light Shade, Special (1943 pattern): 55-T-86606
  • Trousers, Field, Wool, Serge, 18oz, Special (1944 pattern): 55-T-35028-29
  • Trousers, Field, Wool, Serge, OD 33, 18oz, Special (1945 pattern, dark Ike Jacket shade): 55-T-35528-29

This is not a complete list. There were other variations or issues for special purposes.

Trousers, Wool

Wool uniforms on soldiers in sleeping quarters below deck of troopship, in port in Virginia before shipping out, 10 February 1943
Wool uniforms on soldiers in sleeping quarters below deck of troopship, in port in Virginia before shipping out, 10 February 1943.

Shirt, Flannel, OD, Coat Style

The Shirt, Flannel, OD, Coat Style was a fully opening shirt adopted in 1934, with seven buttons down the front and two large chest pockets closed by buttons. During World War II (adopted November 1941) this style was augmented with a convertible collar (i.e. could be buttoned up with a tie or could be worn open) and buttoned gas flaps in the cuffs and inside the front -- with these features the word Special is included in the nomenclature. The Special pattern also included buttons at the back of the collar to attach a gas hood.

In the OQMG photo to the left, the flannel shirt is shown worn with the wool trousers. Note also the web belt with the enlisted man's buckle (open face).

Typical stock numbers would be similar to this label:

Shirt, flannel, OD label

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